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Three Gluten-Free Party Recipes for Italian Dinners

by Cindy Gray

Since pasta is a wheat product loaded with gluten, Italian food and gluten-free don’t seem to go together.  While gluten-free means wheat-free (and other grains like barley, rye or commercially processed oats) that doesn’t mean you can’t serve a delicious Italian feast with gluten-free party recipes. 

These three Gluten-Free Italian recipes are perfect for your next dinner party. They are simple to prepare and delicious, so send out those invitations and get cooking!

Gluten-free party recipes you’ll find easy and delicious

THE APPETIZER

Noodles do a great job of holding the sauce and meatballs. But you can skip them and enjoy these gluten-free party recipes for appetizers.

MEATBALLS

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast

½ Tbsp. red pepper flakes

1/3 cup chopped fresh basil

½ Tbsp. Italian Seasoning

½ Tbsp. dried parsley

1 lbs. package of lean ground turkey

2 egg whites

2 Tbsp. milled flax seed

1/3 cup dried chopped onions

1 Tbsp. minced, garlic

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.  Form meatballs into one-inch diameter; makes approximately 30 meatballs. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicon baking sheet.

Bake meatballs for about 15 minutes, then turn and continue cooking for 3 to 5 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let them rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving

MARINARA DIPPING SAUCE

Making homemade sauce instead of store-bought sauce ensures it is really free of gluten; plus it will taste better and have less sugar or preservatives.

Ingredients:

½ tsp salt

½ tsp black pepper

½ tsp dried parsley

½ tsp oregano

½ tsp rosemary

1-14.5 oz. can of stewed tomatoes

1-14.5 oz. can of tomato paste

One half red or yellow bell peppers (stem and seeds removed)

¼ cup dried or fresh onions, chopped

1Tbsp. minced garlic

Preparation:

Place all ingredients in a blender. Mix until mixture is fairly smooth.  Spray a saucepan lightly with oil and pour in marinara sauce. Simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes.

Serve with meatballs.

THE SALAD COURSE

This quick and easy caprese salad is healthy, and it’s an Italian dinner staple that’s gluten-free. 

Spinach Caprese Salad

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp. fresh chopped basil

1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

½ Tbsp. of olive oil

1 and ½ cups baby spinach

½ cup of cherry tomatoes, chopped

1 oz. of fresh buffalo mozzarella, cubed

Preparation:

Place the spinach in a bowl. Add cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cubes and basil. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and enjoy!

Related:  Mediterranean Diet Improves Quality of Life

THE MAIN COURSE

Nothing says Italian like home cooked lasagna. This noodle-less version is healthier than what mom used to make (sorry mom); it’s gluten-free and delicious.

Ingredients:

1 lb. lean ground turkey

2 large or 5 small zucchini sliced lengthwise

1 white onion, diced

1 small eggplant, sliced

1 green pepper, diced

16 oz. baby spinach

8 oz. mushrooms, sliced

1-15 oz. tomato sauce

1-12 oz. can of tomato paste

2 egg whites

1-15 oz. fat-free ricotta cheese

8 oz. fat-free mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 and ½ Tbsp. salt

2 Tbsp. basil

1 Tbsp. oregano

¼ cup nutritional yeast

1 Tbsp. garlic, minced

Directions:

Lightly salt and oil zucchini and eggplant slices. Bake in oven for 5 minutes.

Place turkey in a pot and cover.  Cook over medium heat till browned (about for 5 minutes.)

Add vegetables and sauté for 5 minutes.

Combine meat with sauce and mix well. Simmer 15-20 minutes.

In a separate bowl, blend ricotta, egg whites and parsley.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare a baking pan.

Layer lasagna in the following order: 1/3 meat sauce, 1/3 zucchini, 1/2 ricotta mixture, 1/2 eggplant slices, then all the mushrooms.

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow cooling for about 10 minutes before serving. Slice into lasagna into squares

Bon appetite!

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